George Floyd‘s family has announced that they plan to sue Kanye “Ye” West for $250 million after the 45-year-old rapper made head-turning comments about Floyd’s murder on a recent episode of Revolt. TV’s Drink Champs podcast. In a press release obtained by HollywoodLife, Roxie Washington, the mother of George Floyd’s minor daughter Gianna, confirmed she has hired two law firms, the Witherspoon Law Group and Dixon and Dixon Attorneys at Law, to file the suit on behalf of Gianna. The release said they plan to file suit against Kanye and his “business partners and associates” for “harassment, defamation and infliction of emotional distress.”
“In his recent appearance on the popular podcast Drink Champs, Kanye West knowingly made blatantly false statements about George Floyd’s death to promote his brands, and increase marketing value and revenue for himself, his business partners, and associates,” the press release continued. “During the podcast interview, Kanye West stated malicious falsehoods about George Floyd to profit from Mr. Floyd’s horrendous death and his family’s trauma.” Later on, it noted that Gianna’s wellbeing is the “priority” and claimed that she has been “retraumatized” by Kanye’s statements, which are “creating an unsafe and unhealthy environment for her.”
In the cease and desist, which was also obtained by HollywoodLife, Gianna’s lawyers demanded that he “immediately cease and desist, and remove the Drink Champs interview and all similar statements regarding George Floyd from every podcast, website, advertisement, social media site, no matter the platform or medium.” They also demanded that he refrain from speaking about George Floyd in any further way.
During the podcast, the Donda rapper declared that George Floyd died in 2020 in Minneapolis, Minn. due to a fentanyl overdose, instead of a lethal amount of force by former police offer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on George’s neck after he was handcuffed over the suspicion that he tried to use a counterfeit $20 bill. An autopsy found that there was a nonlethal amount of fentanyl in George when he died, and his death was ruled a homicide. Derek was convicted on two counts of murder and one of manslaughter in April 2021. The entire ordeal sparked a strong resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement.
The press release noted that the controversial Drink Champs episode had already been taken down, and a representative for the podcast told The Hollywood Reporter that the podcast does not wish to “promote false narratives” in a statement. “Drink Champs prides itself on its ability to allow a free flow of ideas within the hip hop community. That being said, unfortunately, the recent interview with Kanye West contained false and hurtful information regarding the circumstances surrounding the murder of George Floyd,” the beginning of the statement read. “Integrity is very important and we don’t want to promote false narratives on our platform. Our goal is to celebrate the culture. Therefore, we had no choice but to remove the episode from distribution. We apologize to the family of Mr. Floyd and anyone else hurt by this episode.”